web analytics
November 22, 2014 / 29 Heshvan, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Holy Temple’

Arab Protesters Arrested on Temple Mount

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

Six Arab protesters were allegedly arrested Tuesday on the Temple Mount in an unusual move in the Old City of Jerusalem after they harassed Jews by chanting slogans at those who were touring the site.

Israel Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told The Jewish Press at midday that all six male youths who were involved in the incident were taken into custody by officers from the David District  “for attempting to disturb visits taking place.” He added that “visits on the Temple Mount are continuing regularly.” No entry restrictions were deemed necessary, he said. 

Generally police respond to such incitement by removing all tourists and closing the site to all visitors except Muslim women of all ages, and Muslim men with Israeli identity cards, age 50 and up. Jews are also arrested for even moving their lips when touring the Temple Mount, in fear they may be “praying” on the site.

Earlier this week two Knesset members announced they plan to propose a bill that for the first time would allow Jews to pray on the Temple Mount, using religious items such as a tallit (prayer shawl), tefillin (phylacteries) and a siddur (prayer book). The lawmakers did not tell Ynet, which published the report,when the draft of the controversial measure would be brought to the floor for a vote.

At present the Muslim Waqf Authority controls the Temple Mount site in tandem with the Jordanian government, under an agreement with the State of Israel. The site is located at the heart of the conflict between the Palestinian Authority and Israel; the PA insists that Israel hand over the Old City and a significant part of its capital city, Jerusalem, so it can create a new Arab country within Israel’s borders, using the Jerusalem piece as the capital for its new state, “Palestine.” Israel is expected to hand over all of its own Jewish holy places as part of that deal.

The Temple Mount, site of the “holy of holies” located within the two ancient Holy Temples in the Jewish faith, is the most sacred place on earth in the Jewish religion.

It is the third holiest site in Islam, and the place on which two mosques are built – the smaller Dome of the Rock, and the large Al Aqsa Mosque, wherein on most Fridays an imam delivers a fiery anti-Israel sermon urging followers to destroy the Jewish State.

Arab governments around the world use the site as an incitement tool with which to inflame passions and rally local Arabs against the state.

Jewish Men: Watch Out Smashing the Glass Under the Chuppah!

Monday, May 12th, 2014

There’s more to being a Jewish man than one might think. It can be quite dangerous, in fact.

Take the issue involving a Jewish man stamping on a glass (sometimes wrapped in an elegant cloth napkin) at the end of his wedding vows, for instance.

The ritual is intended to remind those attending that even at moments of soaring joy, one must remember the destruction of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem and pray for its return.

But one chatan (bridegroom) now has a warning for future husbands-to-be: be careful when you stomp your glass.

The unnamed chatan cut his foot when he smashed the glass under the chuppah (wedding canopy) at a banquet hall on Rehov Tzfira in Tel Aviv recently.

Hatzolah Emergency Response medic Yehuda Hildeshaim, who was on the scene, treated the injured bridegroom on site. The medic, who said the foot was gashed quite deeply, added that the groom decided he would not go to the hospital until after the rest of the wedding celebrations had concluded.

“We wish the couple ‘mazal tov’ and good health,’ Hildeshaim said.

Jews Petition Police to Offer Passover Sacrifice on Temple Mount

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

Two Jews have petitioned Jerusalem police in the name of dozens of others for permission to carry out the mitzvah of the Passover sacrifice on the Temple Mount this year, for the first time in nearly 2,000 years.

The petitioners claim that police authorization is the only obstacle to ascending the Temple Mount, praying and offering their sacrifice of a lamb, as commanded in the Torah.

They said 100 Jews will be present and will bring with them a portable sacrificial altar and other equipment as described in the Torah.

Rabbi Menachem Boorstein, who is involved with studies of the Holy Temples, said that the mitzvah of the Passover sacrificial offering can be carried out without violating Jewish law. The Chief Rabbinate forbids Jews from ascending the Temple Mount, while a growing number of national religious rabbis permit it under certain conditions and in certain places.

Even the idea of public asking for permission to offer the sacrifice, let along the act itself. could be enough to set off Arabs to wage an all-out war.

Every time a Jews dares to mumble a prayer on the Temple Mount, Muslim officials and police immediately drag them away.

Hundreds of yeshiva students ascended the Temple Mount on Tuesday, the first day of the Hebrew month of Nissan and two weeks before Passover, to hear a lecture on the holy site and on Passover.

Muslims reportedly clashed with the crowd and beat up one of the Jews, but there has been no official confirmation of the claim that there was no provocation besides the actual presence of Jews, which by itself is enough to send the Arabs into a frenzy.

Below is a video of the peaceful moments the crowed of Jews enjoyed on the Temple Mount.

Archaeologists Find Shiloh Altar Used During Temple Era

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

A dramatic discovery at the ancient site of Shiloh, located in Samaria, provides the first–ever evidence that it continued to be a religious center after it was destroyed by the Philistines and Jews returned to the city, home of the Tabernacle.

The altar is thought to have been used to offer sacrifices even after the First Temple was built in Jerusalem.

The stone from the Iron Age, coinciding with the period of the first kings of Israel, was found in a wall built later in the Byzantine period.

Archaeologists think that Byzantines took the stone altar from its original site, which might have been in the same location as the Tabernacle. There are two conflicting theories on its location, one stating it is on the northern side of ancient Shiloh and the other placing it on the southern side.

Avital Faleh, administrator of the Tel Shiloh site, told The Jewish Press Wednesday that the wall was on the southern side and that it is more reasonable that the Byzantines carried the altar from nearby rather than several hundred yards, which would be the case if the Tabernacle were located on the northern side.

The stone was measured at two feet by two feet and almost 16 inches high.

Other altars used for sacrificial worship during the First Temple era have been discovered in Be’er Sheva and near Arad in the south and in Tel Dan and near Shiloh in the north. Faleh explained that the stone altar is almost identical with others that have been discovered.

The revelation on Tuesday of the discovery at Shiloh is the first evidence of post-Tabernacle sacrificial worship at the same site where the Bible states the first Tabernacle was erected after the Jews entered Israel following the Exodus from Egypt and the 40 years of living in the Sinai.

Joshua 18:1 states, “The whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled together at Shiloh and erected there the Tent of Assembly, and the land was conquered before them.” The Tabernacle remained at Shiloh for 369 years, according to the Talmud.

The Philistines went to war against the Jews, destroyed the city, and captured the Holy Ark. The Tabernacle probably had been removed before the end of the war but was not used when sacrificial offerings were later offered at two other places, Nov and Gideon, until King Solomon built the First Temple.

However, it took years before Jewish communities, especially Shiloh that was the home of the first sacrifices Israel, adjusted to the cultural and religious change.

In July, archaeologists  said they believed they discovered the remains of the Biblical tabernacle site, after finding holes carved into the rock and which may have been used to hold beams for the Tabernacle.

The Jewish Press reported here in January, that the discovery of  an uncovered broken clay pitcher, embedded in a layer of reddish ashes, is from the time of the devastation of Shiloh, offering detailed evidence of the destruction.

Shiloh was the most significant religious center for Israel before the Philistines destroyed it. The Jewish people offered mandatory sacrifices, and it was there that lots were cast for tribal areas and the cities of the Levites.

Deuteronomy 12:4-7, states,  “You should not do any [act of sacrificial worship] to God, your God, other than at the site which God, your God will choose, to place His Name there, from amongst all your tribes. You should seek out His dwelling [place in the Tabernacle at Shiloh] and come there. You should bring there your burnt offerings, and your [obligatory peace] offerings, your tithes, [first fruits] lifted from your hand [by the priests]—your vows, your pledges, and the firstborn of your cattle and of your sheep [which are to be given to the priests]. [It is] there that you should eat [your sacrifices] before God your God. Then you and your households will rejoice in all the work of your hands. [You should bring offerings according to the means with] which God, your God, blesses you.”

Netanyahu at UN: If Israel Must Act Alone against Iran, We Will Do So

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told the United Nations Tuesday afternoon that Israel will never allow Iran to possess nuclear weapons and that it will act alone to prevent a nuclear Iran if sanctions do not work.

He did not mince words in attacking the Iranian regime for being deceitful and anti-democratic, and he provided fact after fact to prove that the regime has been hiding behind “smooth rhetoric” in order to “have its yellow cake and eat it, too.”

The Prime Minister verbally knocked out Iranian President Hassan Rohani, comparing him with his predecessor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad with one external difference.

“Ahmadinejad was a wolf in wolf’s clothing; Rohani is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. A wolf who thinks he can pull the wool over the eyes of the international community, but like everyone else, I wish we could believe Rohani’s words, but we must focus on Iran’s action,” Netanyahu said.

Prime Minister Netanyahu told the United Nations that Rohani is a servant to a “rogue” regime that wants to annihilate Israel and that Rohani simply cannot be believed when he says he wants negotiations over its nuclear program.

He pleaded with the international community not to let up on sanctions in return for “cosmetic concessions” that would allow Iran to race ahead to develop nuclear weapons when it wants.

Iran was quick to respond to what one delegate said was an “extremely inflammatory statement.” The delegate told the General Assembly that the “Prime Minister must not dare think about attacking Iran.”

He countered Netanyahu’s warning that Israel will defend itself by stating, “He should seriously avoid miscalculation against Iran. Iran’s century-long policy of nonaggression should not be interpreted as an unwillingness to defend itself.”

The delegate then tried to turn the tables on Israel, mocking it for demanding that Iran disclose its nuclear program while Israel needs to be “educated” for being the “only non-party” to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

Without refuting the Prime Minister’s carefully outlined evidence that Iran is trying to gain capability to manufacture a nuclear warhead, the delegate said with a straight face, “We reject equating the peaceful pursuit of nuclear energy with nuclear weapons.”

The only kind words Netanyahu had for Iran was for the ancient Persian empire.

“Our hope for the future is challenged by a nuclear-armed Iran…but I want you to know that this was not always the case,” he said. “Some 2,500 year ago, the great Persian King Cyrus ended the Babylonian exile of the Jewish people…[and] proclaimed the right of Jews to return to the Land of Israel and to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem.”

He said this historic tie lasted for centuries but that in 1979, “a radical regime took over Iran” and “was busy thrashing the Iranian people’s hopes for democracy” while encouraging chants of “death to the Jews.”

The central theme of Netanyahu’s speech was that Rohani is a con artist who has been up to his neck in encouraging the secret development of nuclear weapons and is also an integral part of the Iranian regime’s policies of brutal suppression of domestic opposition and support of terrorist attacks against the West.

“He was on the Supreme Council from 1989 to 2003, during which time Iran gunned down opposition leaders and murdered 85 people in the Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires,” Prime Minister Netanyahu asserted. He also fingered Iran for attack that cost the lives of 241 U.S. Marines in Beirut.

As for Rohani’s speech in the United Nations last week when he patted the Islamic Republic on the back for being “democratic,” Prime Minister Netanyahu retaliated,  “The regime he represents executes dissidents by the hundreds, kills them by the thousands,” and participates in Assad’s “massacre of tens of thousands of men, women and children” while propping up the regime that uses chemical weapons against its own citizens.

“I wish I could believe Rohani but I don’t because facts are …that Iran’s savage record contradicts soothing rhetoric,” the Prime Minister added.

He reminded the United Nations that Rohani, as the negotiator for Iran from 2003 to 2005, “masterminded the strategy that allowed Iran to seek nuclear weapons behind very soothing rhetoric.”

USA Today on Tuesday published evidence to back up Netanyahu’s accusations that Rohani and his Muslim superiors are trying to pull the wool over the world’s eyes.

Last Friday, President Barack Obama gushed over Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei who the president said “has issued a fatwa against the development of nuclear weapons.”

However, the newspaper cited research from MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute) that no such fatwa exists.

“An exhaustive search of the various official websites of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei turned up no such fatwa, either on his fatwa website or on his personal website,” according to MEMRI.

The research group “says the fatwa was first mentioned by Sirius Naseri, an Iranian representative to a meeting of the U.N.’s nuclear agency in 2005, but is not listed among the hundreds of fatwas that Khamenei has issued on his official or personal website,” USA Today wrote.

Netanyahu clearly spelled out Iran’s history of being caught “red-handed” at least twice building underground nuclear facilities and pointed out that it is developing Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs), which he said are for the “sole purpose of carrying nuclear warheads.”

He reiterated his demands in last year’s speech at the United Nations that Iran must dismantle its nuclear infrastructure, turn over is stockpile of enriched uranium and stop all enrichment before sanctions can be lifted.

He said sanctions are working and that Rohani was elected to remove  the sanctions while continuing to develop nuclear weapons and declared, “Rohani thinks he can get away with it because he has gotten away with it before.”

Exacting Vengeance on the Gentiles?

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013

Once again we are treated to the sight of very religious looking Jews acting like a street gang. A statue of a cross with a figure of Jesus on it was defaced by a group of Breslover Chasidim in Uman. The cross was recently erected opposite the grave of the founder of this Chasidus, Rav Nachman of Breslov – located in the Ukrainian city of Uman. From JTA:

“To exact vengeance on the gentiles,” reads the message, which was scrawled across the torso of a figure of Jesus. A further inscription on Jesus’ leg reads, “Stop desecrating the name of God.”

This kind of thing would not surprise me if it were being done by extremists from a community that embraces an isolationist lifestyle. But although they are hardcore Chasidim who dress and look much the same as Satmar Chasidim – Breslovers do a lot of outreach. I would expect them to know how to behave in a more civilized manner. They must have had a socialization process that taught them that or they could not do outreach. And yet here they have acted in a completely uncivilized way.

So it comes as a bit of a surprise that a Christian symbol near their venerated Rebbe’s grave site was desecrated with graffiti. I guess their socialization process goes just so far. A statue of Jesus so close to their Rebbe’s grave site was too much to handle.

I don’t know why the Ukrainian Government chose that site for its statue. I don’t think it was a wise decision. But at the same time, I don’t think it was necessarily meant to ‘stick it’ to the Breslovers either. It was probably just not a well thought out plan.

I can understand why these Chasidim felt outrage. They consider the Breslover Rebbe’s gravesite to be so holy that make annual pilgrimages to it. Tens of thousands of Jews (mostly Breslover Chasidim) from all over the world visit it during Rosh Hashanah – one of the holiest times of the year. It is almost as though they were making a pilgrimage to Jerusalem’s Holy Temple. Seeing the sight of Jesus on a cross must have made them feel like they were seeing Avodah Zara in the Beis HaMikdash.

The outrage is understandable. But their expression of it is inexcusable. It is the kind of behavior that can bring tragedy upon the Jewish people. Uman is not Jerusalem. R. Nachman’s gravesite is not the Beis HaMikdash. The citizens of Uman are their hosts. Breslovers are guests. And the guests have just defaced the image of the god their hosts worship.

The more responsible Breslover leadership has apologized. Sort of. From JTA:

“We respect other religions, and don’t wish to damage symbols of other religions. But, unfortunately, not all of our coreligionists understand this. They could break or destroy the cross. That would lead to a genuine war between hasidim and Christians. We cannot allow that, so we request that the cross be moved to a different location,” said Shimon Busquila, a representative of the Rabbi Nachman International Fund…

It may have been a legitimate request. But it was made too late. If made at all it should have been made politely before the statue was vandalized. Nonetheless the deputy mayor of Uman agreed with it.

On the other hand the citizens of Uman were so outraged by the vandalism – that they will have no part of moving the statue. They promised retaliation against Rav Nachman’s grave if it is moved. I can’t say that I blame them.

I think the point to be made here is contained in the response made by Shimon Busquila: ‘…not all of our coreligionists understand this’.

That is exactly the problem. Why don’t they understand this? It is not enough for a leader to simply say that some of their co-religionists do not understand the consequences of being uncivilized – thereby damaging the property of their hosts.  Especially their religious symbols. No matter how upsetting it is to them.

The Chasidim who did this are taught to hate non Jewish religious symbols much more than they are taught to behave in civilized ways when encountering them. So when they get upset at the sight of one of those hated symbols, they react in ways that bring ill repute upon – and ill will against – our people. They do so without thinking or perhaps even caring about the consequences.

Looking For God In Our Skyscrapers

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Over the last decade, Tisha B’Av, the day that we traditionally mourn the destruction of our Holy Temple in Jerusalem, has been admitted to the pantheon of Jewish holy days that are not for the observant only: holy days that speak to everyone.

Yom Kippur has always been there. It is the private holy day, special to us all. A solid majority of the Jews in Israel fast on that day. Even those who do not fast feel something special: they respect the day and search for its meaning. Yom Kippur does not just pass us by like the holiday of Shavuot, for example.

Pesach is another holy day that has always been a holiday for all the Jews. It is the family holiday. The Seder night – kosher-for-Passover or not – is celebrated by Jewish families everywhere. It is a holiday that has not been separated from the nation by the walls of religion.

What we still lack is the national dimension, the dimension that retains a void not filled by banging on plastic hammers on Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israel’s Independence Day. Yom Ha’atzmaut always leaves us with a vague sense of emptiness.

The collective subconscious that pulls the young people of Tel Aviv’s trendy Shenkin Street to alternative lamentations on the city rooftops discovers something in Tisha B’Av. It longs for the spiritual national dimension. It searches for meaning and warmth.

Real Israeli culture, the authentic national creation that we are all looking for, the point that affords meaning and validity to our national existence, is there – in our Father’s house, from which we were exiled and to where we will return.

Return to religion enriches the returnee. But usually it is at the expense of the real achievement of the return to Zion, Israel’s rising and return from the dimension of community to the dimension of nation – at the expense of the return to reality and history.

Generally speaking (and yes, there are certainly exceptions), the returnee to religion is no longer interested in the news, politics or the state. He has found his personal happiness and leaves the rest to the Messiah. His God is not so relevant outside his home, study hall or synagogue.

The new generation, however, wants God to be relevant in all dimensions. It doesn’t want to escape into religion. It wants a grand message, rectification of the world; neither to go backward into pre-Zionism nor to be stuck in the place bereft of identity and meaning in which Zionism – which shed all regard for religion – finds itself today.

The new generation wants it all. It wants to go forward into religion, to a Torah that is also a relevant culture and to a God who is with us here, in our modernity. It wants to proceed in our multilevel interchanges, in our skyscrapers, and in our hi-tech. It is looking for a God who is with us in our most private moments, in our most national triumphs, and in our most universal aspirations. The new generation wants warmth, a sense of belonging and meaning. It wants to herald a great message. It wants a home: it’s Father’s home, the home to which we all belong.

It wants the Beit HaMikdash, the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/moshe-feiglin/looking-for-god-in-our-skyscrapers/2013/08/01/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: